Information and Facts about the British Virgin Islands

June 2020

 The British Virgin Islands (BVI) is one of the world’s largest, respected and oldest offshore centres in the world for incorporating offshore companies, with about 40% of the world’s offshore companies being incorporated there.

The BVI is a British overseas territory which is located in the Eastern Caribbean, which is made up of a number of Islands, however only 15 of these are inhabited.  Road Town is the BVI’s capital and is situated on the largest island, Tortola.

There is a good commercial and professional infrastructure in the BVI and the development of the finance services sector is promoted by the BVI Government.

The BVI’s legal system is based upon English common law and English is the official language of the BVI with the official currency being the United States Dollar.

Chesterfield Falcon Limited and the British Virgin Islands

Chesterfield Falcon Limited have a team of highly skilled individuals who have been dealing with the incorporation and administration of BVI companies for many years.  Our team has a mix of knowledgeable specialists in a number of fields which the BVI offers and are here to help, guide and advise on whatever structure it is you wish to establish.   We can assist with BVI Offshore Company incorporation, Director and Secretarial services, opening   Bank Accounts, Accountancy Services, providing administration services and many more.

Corporate Advantages of the British Virgin Islands

The BVI has no capital gains or capital transfer tax, there is also no sale tax, VAT or inheritance tax.  However, please be aware that there are stamp duties on certain transactions and property taxes.  In 2004 the BVI abolished personal and corporate income tax replacing this with a payroll tax which is levied on local employees.

Company Formation in the British Virgin Islands

The most common company incorporated in the BVI is a company limited by shares under the BVI Business Companies Act 2004. Chesterfield Falcon Limited are able to incorporate any of the companies which the BVI offer and incorporation procedures are pretty straightforward, once incorporated can offer a domiciliary service which includes registered office, agent, directors, secretary, nominated officer and shareholders.  A Company name will need to be given to check and obtain approval at the BVI Registry and it should not imply a regulated activity or contain any sensitive words or contain offensive language.  The company name must end with a word/phrase/abbreviation such as Limited, Ltd, Corp etc. Once the name is approved and full compliance has been obtained on the client Chesterfield Falcon Limited will be in a position to prepare and submit the incorporation paperwork at the BVI Registry to incorporate the Company.

Due Diligence for New British Virgin Islands Companies

Compliance documents must be received and completed as part of our take on procedure when a company is incorporated for a new client, this is in line with Chesterfield Falcon Limited Anti Money Laundering Guidelines.  Our take on procedure requires the client to complete an application form and provide identification and verification documents such as passport, address verification, CV and references.  No two clients are the same so we don’t have one standard take on package that covers all our clients, we treat each client on a case to case basis and this will also depend on the activity, turnover, funds of the company, etc.  Our compliance guidelines must be completed and checked before a company can be incorporated.

Company Administration and Provision of Directors/Secretary/Shareholders and Registered Office and Agent in the British Virgin Islands

Chesterfield Falcon Limited can provide all the services you require for your BVI company when it comes to providing the officers and agents to your newly incorporated company and the ongoing administration.  A minimum of one Director and Shareholder must be appointed to the company and a Secretary is not required however one can be appointed if required. The Director, Shareholder and Secretary can be an individual or corporate entity.  A registered office and registered agent based in the BVI must be also be appointed.

Registry and Searches in the British Virgin Islands

The BVI Registry of Corporate Affairs is located in Tortola, BVI.  Paperwork will need to be completed and submitted for the incorporation of the company.  The Registry require all companies to file a Register of Directors within 21 days of the appointment of the company’s first Directors otherwise a penalty will be issued.  Upon a change the company’s officers, allotment of shares, etc  the registers must be updated and provided to the company’s agent to keep Company in good standing.  Chesterfield Falcon Limited can assist with the preparation and filing of all forms for our clients.  Company searches can be carried out in the BVI and Chesterfield Falcon Limited are available to assist with any searches which are required.

Banking and Bank Account Opening for British Virgin Island Companies

Once your BVI company has been established then a bank account may be required.  Where Chesterfield Falcon Limited provide the directors to BVI companies we will be able to assist with the opening of a bank account for your company.  We would recommend opening your bank account at one of the well known high street banks represented on the Isle of Man.  The Isle of Man banking sector is renowned for its customer service, image and reputation.  Once your new company has been incorporated Chesterfield Falcon Limited will assist in preparing the banking forms and paperwork for your new company bank account to be opened.  The paperwork will be submitted at the bank of your choice or upon our recommendation, if you have no preference.

Accounts for British Virgin Island Companies

Chesterfield Falcon Limited maintain bookkeeping records and prepare accounts for all their BVI Companies.  There is no requirement to file or audit accounts in the BVI.

Tax Returns for British Virgin Island Companies

BVI companies do not need to complete and submit a yearly tax return.

VAT and VAT Registration in the British Virgin Islands.

If your BVI company requires to be VAT registered then as long as Chesterfield Falcon Limited are the Directors of the company we will be able to help with this and can apply for your company to be registered for VAT in the Isle of Man.  Although the Isle of Man is not been part of the United Kingdom, it is treated as part of the United Kingdom for VAT purposes.  This means that imports and exports between the Isle of Man and the UK are not treated as such.  VAT law in the Isle of Man is extremely similar to that of the United Kingdom and is administered by the Isle of Man Customs and Excise.  You may need to register your company for VAT if it has a turnover of £81,000 per annum or more.  Once registered then the company will have to prepare and file quarterly VAT returns.  Chesterfield Falcon can plan, prepare and submit all necessary paperwork to the Isle of Man VAT office to have your company registered in a timely manner and ensure that all the statutory and regulatory requirements are met on a quarterly basis.


The BVI has a wide variety of business uses and great benefits and continues to keep the reputation as an attractive place for offshore incorporation by continuing to introduce legislation in order to offer as broad a range of corporate structures as possible.

For any queries which you may have no matter how small or if you just wish to discuss what the BVI can offer you, please do feel free to get in touch on 0162469550 and one of our dedicated team will be waiting to take your call and chat with you and discuss your questions.  Alternatively, you can contact us by clicking here.

Please find below some links for the BVI which you may find useful:

BVI Registry of Corporate Affairs  –